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Der Strand Zlatni Rat / Goldenes Horn auf Brac, Bild: artem evdokimov / shutterstock

The island of Brac is worth a trip

The island of Brac off the Croatian coast is spoiled by over 300 days of sunshine a year and its beaches reach a length of 170 kilometers when strung together. The population lives, apart from tourism, from fishing, viticulture and olive growing. The white limestone of the island is famous, which was already used by the Romans for the construction of palaces and was used, among other things, for the White House in Washington and the Budapest Parliament. Some quarries are still in operation today.

A total of 116 churches are spread over the island, many of them from early Christian and old Croatian times. Often there is no signage indicating their locations or they can only be reached on winding paths. Brac has a network of designated hiking and cycling routes. Hiking maps of circular and themed trails around the island towns are usually available at the local tourist information offices. In the restaurants of the island, guests can taste local specialties such as fish, seafood and dishes with lamb.

The journey is via the airport of Split and then by ferry to Supetar or the catamaran to Bol. The ferries run every hour during the season and take about an hour. The catamaran operates twice a day. From Sumartin in the east of the island, there is also a ferry connection to Makarska on the mainland.

Supetar – the only town on Brac

The main town and only town on the island is Supetar on the north coast opposite Split. The bustling waterfront is lined with bars and restaurants and surrounded by several beaches. Here you will find several diving centers, a surf center and a jet ski rental. Another meeting place for tourists and locals is the Put Vele Luke promenade. This is also where the island’s nightlife begins after dark in bars and discos. Sights include the mausoleum of the Petrinovic family and the early Christian mosaics near the church. From June to September, visitors can expect a cultural programme consisting of concerts, exhibitions, a fishermen’s festival and folklore evenings.

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Bol – The most famous tourist resort on Brac

Bol, Brac
View of Bol, Image: xbrchx / shutterstock

The most famous place among tourists is Bol in the south of the island. It is surrounded by pine forests that reach down to the beaches. Above Bol, the well-known Bolski Plavac wine is grown on terraced fields. The Golden Horn, a 500-meter-long headland that is considered the most beautiful beach in Croatia, is famous. The top of the pebble beach changes depending on the current, so that the beach sometimes takes the shape of a horn and sometimes the shape of a sickle. Along the beaches, visitors will find a wide range of water sports, diving centres and boat rentals. The small harbour is lined with many restaurants serving fresh fish. Sights include the baroque Loza summer palace with an adjoining church at the harbour. In summer, folklore events take place, such as dances and songs by local groups.

Several designated hiking and cycling routes start and end in Bol. The hike to the viewpoint on Vidova Gora, the highest mountain of the Croatian islands at 778 meters, is popular. The climb to the top is rewarded with a breathtaking panoramic view of the neighboring Dalmatian islands.

Destinations in the vicinity of Bol

Dominican Monastery in Bol
The ancient Dominican monastery in Bol, Image: Dreamer4787 / shutterstock

East of Bol is the Dominican monastery, which today houses a museum and has a monastery garden worth seeing. The monastery also offers accommodation and even has its own beach. West of Bol, the Dragon Cave near Murvica can be visited. It used to be used as a church and monks engraved reliefs of mythical figures on its walls in the 16th century. Since the grotto is not freely accessible, you have to make an appointment with the guide in advance.

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Halfway between Bol and Milna is the Blaca Hermitage. It is a former monastery complex that has been used as a museum since 1963. The location is spectacular, 3 kilometers from the coast, nestled against a rock face high above sea level. The visit is only possible by appointment and the last part of the journey can only be done on foot along paved paths. The last priest, Nikola Milicevic, used the hermitage as an observatory and had to transport all the furnishings to the cut valley on foot or by donkey.

Milna

In the bay of Milna lies the island’s marina with its almost 200 berths. The holiday resort on the west coast of the island can score with a waterfront promenade that encloses the entire bay. The village is surrounded by beautiful beaches, with a nudist area also designated to the south. In the season, ferries to Split and the island of Hvar dock here. Around the harbour, cafes, taverns and restaurants await the visitor. In addition to the baroque church, the Angliscina castle from the 16th century is worth seeing.

Skrip – popular destination on Brac

Skrip, Brac
Old stone houses in Skrip, Image: Ulyana Khorunzha / shutterstock

Skrip is located inland and is a popular destination as the oldest village on the island. On every corner, the visitor will find relics from Roman and medieval times. In addition to a small chapel from the 11th century, the village houses a baroque parish church from the 18th century that is well worth seeing. The former defensive bulwark of Radojkovic is now home to the Island Museum. The exhibits include Roman tombstones, handicrafts and sailor’s maps. In the museum courtyard, a mausoleum from Roman times can be admired. A visit to the Oil Museum is also worthwhile, where you can taste and buy other local products in addition to olive oil.